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Nutrition & Fitness Newsletter

Eating Out & Eating Healthy

Dining out at restaurants can sometimes feel like a minefield of poor food choices.  With a bit of creative ordering and planning you can stay on track with a healthy diet.  Many restaurants now post menus on their websites along with nutrition information, try to preview menus in advance, when you’re not hungry.  At the restaurant don’t hesitate to ask for modifications to your meal.  It lets the establishment know that you are interested in healthy options and could lead to permanent changes to the menu which will benefit all of us.  Here are some strategies eating healthier by reducing fat and calories while dining out.

Choose Low-Fat Meals - Having a lower fat meals will prevent heart disease by reducing saturated fats that can raise cholesterol.  While we need to have fat in our diet, we should focus on the healthy fats that come from fish, nuts and seeds.  Here are few ways to reduce bad fats in the diet.
  • Avoid cream-or cheese-based sauces or soups instead order broth or tomato based soups or sauces.
  • Limit or avoid eating chips or bread with butter before the meal, a strategy would be to ask the server to not to bring these items to the table.
  • Choose fish and poultry over red meats, as red meats are typically higher in saturated fat.
  • Ask for salad dressing on the side so you will have control over the amount of dressing on your salad.
  • Request that foods be prepared with less oil or butter.
  • Avoid deep-fried foods such as french fries, fried noodles and breaded items.  Look for grilled, baked, roasted, broiled, steamed, poached or sautéed dishes.  Many restaurants will substitute fries with a salad or vegetables.

Reduce the Calories - The tips listed above will reduce calories by lowering the fat since fat has twice the calories of protein and carbohydrates. Here some additional adjustments to lower the calories of your restaurant meal.
  • Try ordering a healthy appetizer and salad instead of a main course.  Some restaurants now offer small plate options.
  • Focus on menu items that have lean protein and vegetables.
  • Ask for more vegetables and less of the starchy foods such as rice, bread, pasta or potatoes.
  • Share your entrée with your dining companion(s).
  • When your dish arrives, visualize how much you plan to eat and how much you plan to take home.
  • You could even ask for a take home container in advance and fill it before eating.

Overall, enjoy your dining out experience by taking time to savor your meal by chewing well, eating slowly and eating mindfully while noticing when you're full and ready to stop eating.

Here are few reasons to see a nutritionist/personal trainer/health coach: assess nutrient intake, disease prevention through diet, and exercise, maximize exercise performance, improve sleep quality, enhance mental clarity, optimize digestion and nutrient absorption, establish long-term healthy habits, meal planning for a whole foods diet and eat in a way to sustain the planet.  Please consider Sheri for nutrition counseling and/or fitness appointments to help you develop a healthier lifestyle for you and the planet. 


Stress Leads to Increased Hunger

A recent study reported in the International Journal of Obesity, showed that hunger hormones increased in the evening while the hormone that lead to satiety (fullness) decreased.  When the study participants were stressed the hunger hormones rose even more.  This may be the reason why we tend to overeat in the evenings.  Stress management may help to reduce evening hunger.

Sheri is a Certified Nutritionist with a master's degree in nutrition, with over 15 years of clinical counseling experience, an ACE-certified Personal Trainer with advanced certifications in medical exercise, senior fitness and health coaching.  All nutrition consultations include exercise guidance, dietary analysis and meal plans to meet your individual lifestyle, calorie and nutritional needs.

Free introductory 15-minute appointments are also available.

To schedule an appointment with Sheri Mar, email:  or call:  206.789.6440

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